Author Archives: Damien Kingsbury

About Damien Kingsbury

Wiranto and Indonesia’s new Cabinet

The appointment of a war criminal and broader cabinet shake-up is the latest in a series of hardline decisions by President Jokowi. But will it backfire?  Indonesia President Joko Widodo’s recent announcement of his new cabinet line-up aroused two responses. The first was howls of outrage that former defence chief and alleged human rights abuser […]

The Turkish attempted coup: 3 scenarios

Re the ‘coup attempt’ in Turkey: three scenarios. 1. The attempted coup was as it’s been portrayed by the Turkish government – an anti-democratic coup that failed. 2. It’s a plot by President Recept Tayyip Erdogan to seize power (the conspiracy theory) – not likely but has some logic to it, and 3. There was […]

Brexit and its implications

In the avalanche of commentary about the UK’s vote to leave the European Union, it may be that one more voice from the periphery is irrelevant. But this decision not only has implications beyond the UK, in economic terms, it also manifests a wider sense of disenchantment and disenfranchisement among many people in developed countries. […]

Halal elections for Aceh

When Aceh’s Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed in Helsinki in 2005, it was intended to bring peace to Aceh. This was not just intended to end to the fighting between the Free Aceh Movement and the Government of Indonesia, but to bring peace for all Acehnese in all circumstances, based on rebuilding their lives […]

Backlash against Belgian terrorist attack to feed into terrorist logic

THE latest attack by Islamist terrorists in Brussels has many asking whether it is possible for Western intelligence agencies to get on top of this continuing threat. It is known that there is a deeply embedded network of Islamist terrorists which appears to be able to strike at will with devastating consequences, but it is […]

Bongbong makes his move

It is perhaps a little unfair to say that only in the Philippines would the people consider electing a politician known by the otherwise clownish name of ‘Bongbong’. But equally, and arguably more fairly, in very few places but the Philippines would voters consider electing as vice-president the unapologetic son of a corrupt and brutal […]

Doing right by East Timor should be bipartisan policy

The Timor Sea issue is back on the national agenda following the announcement on Wednesday by shadow foreign minister Tanya Plibersek that Labor will, in government, scrap the existing Timor Sea Treaty. She said that Labor would enter into new negotiations on a permanent boundary between Australia and East Timor and, if a negotiated settlement […]

The horrors of Madaya are far from over

As aid convoys entered the besieged Syrian city of Madaya, the horrors of “walking skeletons” earned the Assad regime further, justified international condemnation. This follows its direct attacks against civilians, the use of chemical weapons, and the indiscriminate use of barrel bombs. The atrocities of Islamic State and the less visible war crimes of the […]

North Korea bomb test: Kim Jong-Un is riding a tiger he dares not dismount

North Korea’s claimed success in testing a hydrogen bomb – a thermonuclear weapon significantly more powerful than an atomic bomb – has set the world on edge. Any testing of a nuclear weapon by a non-signatory to the Nuclear Weapons Non-Proliferation Treaty, especially a rogue state such as North Korea, is cause for concern. That […]